Fri 05/03/2021

Suzanne Sholte: We hope Biden administration will reverse Trump’s decision on Western Sahara

4 weeks ago at 04/Feb/2021 59

President of the American NGO, Defense Forum Foundation, Suzanne Sholte, said on Wednesday she hoped that President Biden’s administration will reverse Trump’s “wrong decision” of the former US president Donald Trump on the recognition of the alleged Moroccan sovereignty over Western Sahara.

“I am very hopeful that we will be able to convince the Biden administration to reverse the wrong decision taken by President Trump,” said Suzanne Sholte, in a statement to the Sahrawi Press Agency (SPS).

She indicated she felt “confident because people who know and support” the Sahrawi issue, “whether they are Republicans or Democrats, conservatives or liberals, have one thing in common, namely that they look at the issue from a legal perspective and they cannot be bought. They really care about the rule of law and justice”.

The president of the U.S. NGO recalled that after Trump’s recognition of Morocco’s alleged sovereignty over Western Sahara, her Foundation “immediately called on him to reverse” his decision and “recognize instead the legitimate government of the Sahrawi Republic,” stressing that it is an “illegal occupation.

She added that during her more than 25 years of experience on the Western Sahara conflict, she “has found that the only people who recognize” Morocco’s alleged claims, “ignore the facts and history of this issue or worse, they get improper favors from Morocco, including bribes and financial support”.

The American official assures that her organization will continue its work to “support” the Sahrawi cause and to “reverse” Trump’s decision.

“We have a strong case because we are on the right side of history, justice and the rule of law,” Sholte said.

“We want to underline our continued commitment to ending Morocco’s illegal occupation, so that the people of Western Sahara and those still living as refugees can return to their homeland,” she indicated.

Ms. Sholte recalled the strong reactions expressed by many prominent American personalities, such as Republican Senator Jim Inhofe, who called Trump’s decision very misguided, saying that “it’s very ironic, because it was Trump himself who denounced the corruption of the Moroccan lobby in 2016”.

She also recalled the position of the international community regarding the Sahrawi issue, stressing that both the International Court of Justice and the European Court of Justice have rejected Morocco’s alleged sovereignty over Western Sahara and that no state in the world recognizes Morocco’s alleged sovereignty over the occupied territory.

In this regard, she expressed her “admiration for the efforts made by the people of Western Sahara to build a modern and democratic state”. “It is a Republic that embraces democratic values, freedom of expression, the right to vote, free market economy and it is remarkable what they have been able to achieve, even if they still live as refugees because of this illegal occupation,” she affirmed.

The Defense Forum Foundation is a U.S. non-profit foundation dedicated to promoting a strong national defense and promoting freedom, democracy, and human rights abroad.

It is best known for its Congressional Defense and Foreign Policy Forums, held regularly on Capitol Hill for the benefit of Congressional staff, and for its work abroad promoting the freedom, human rights and dignity of the people.

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